Yes. I live in a small town and it’s a population of 4,500 – that’s the kind of size a “small town” is. And even at 4,500, we have a hospital, private school, public school, and a diverse number of employers. 20,000 is much more than a small town. The Super Walmart is a huge plus and a positive affirmation that the area has a solid future. Don’t be too alarmed by low population growth numbers, as that has a lot to do with demographics and size of households. Unless you have huge numbers of kids being born, it is fairly standard for the size of households to be declining by kids going to college or moving on, and mortality. Imagine the lifestyle of an average family that is being measured. Two adults have two kids, and the population of that household doubles. Then the two kids grow up and go out on their own, and the population plunges 50%, even though the economic occupancy of that house does not change during the whole time. Unemployment rate is a much more important statistic, and it sounds like it is in good order in your proposed market.
Obviously, you have to do complete diligence on the market. A test ad is going to be hugely important when you get into smaller population sizes, just to test the vitality of the market and the demand for affordable housing. But nothing you are saying is turning me off.